In Part One, the previous post, I explained why I turned the prodigal band’s drummer, Tom, from being born into an impoverished family into being the son of an indentured servant and explained what an indenture is. Now I will post snippets beginning in Chapter One of Battle of the Band, the first novel in The Prodigal Band Trilogy, to set up the scenario of consequences of this indebtedness on not only the one whose father was indebted but also the owner of the debt, who would pay a huge price should the debt be paid off.
The first of several snippets begins with someone among a group of very powerful overlords within the secretive Novordo Club discussing using the prodigal band, Sound Unltd, for their nefarious purposes of debauching youth culture. After ‘Mr. Y’ states why singer Erik, guitarists Jack and Mick, and keyboard synthist Bry would do anything to achieve fame and fortune for their own purposes, drummer Tom is mentioned.
“Their drummer Tom lives with clairvoyant Prissy Wyatt and pretends to channel the god Corion for amusement. His father is indentured to the Duke of Effingchester. The young curly blond doesn’t know this. He’s in it to find out.
The next snippet, from Chapter Four of Battle of the Band, has Tom, now a rock star millionaire, paying off the indenture, the debt his father owed, which, having also to pay off recurring debt over hundreds of years, is well over a million pounds. His father, who is illiterate, has Tom’s letter claiming the debt is paid off being read to him by a neighbor. It is February, 1991.
Tom’s father opened a letter from his son.
“Dad,” the short paragraph began, “I have done as promised and paid off the rest of your enormous debt to the creditor, Smith. Of course, we both know that the so-called Smith is only some aristocrat’s agent. For your sake I will find out who has enslaved you, and so many other Hovels folks, and give the bastard what he deserves. I’ll kill him of necessary! Also, I’ve paid all the debts of the other indentured people. There are no more indebted in Walltown. See you soon. Take care, and I’ve sent a ‘little something’ else besides. Tom.”
A neighbor read it to the illiterate middle-aged man. “And here is a cheque as well.” Her eyes opened wide. “A big cheque, it is.”
“Yeh,” the man said.
The third snippet begins in the very next paragraph, when the owner of the indenture, the fifteenth Duke of Effingchester, is ‘sitting at his mahogany desk’ having just opened the envelope with the check from Tom to the bank Effingchester owns to pay off the hundreds of years of debt. The check is made out to ‘Smith,’ Effingchester’s proxy who runs the bank. The check, as Tom told his father, pays off all of the indentured debt of all the indentured folks living in the Walltown slum called the Hovels. When Smith inquires about it, Effingchester refuses to answer him on a ‘need to know’ basis. Then the narrator, the ‘Counselor Angel,’ reveals the ‘curse’ Effingchester referred to.
“Well, Smith,” the Duke of Effingchester said sitting at his mahogany desk, “this check made out to you cancels the Walltown Hovels debt. Forever.”
“Which means that damned drummer has now set in motion a new scenario. One that may destroy my family. Forever.”
“Destroy, sir? Forever? What do you mean—”
“When you need to know, Smith, I will tell you!” Effingchester stood up. “It’s a prophecy, Smith. Goes back to the year 1136 when the fourth Duke of Effingchester defeated the peasants of the Hovels.” He turned away from Smith. And that curly blond rocker will pay for this! I will take away his happiness as he has taken away mine!
And I, His Counselor-angel, knew the prophecy. It was told to the fourth Duke of Effingchester that night in July, 1136, when he called forth The Demons.
“Mind you,” Gold Demon had told the Duke. “This debt must never be paid. Make sure the peasants remain destitute, never to be free from debt. For the one who clears the debt will be a curse to you and your descendants, and will send the souls of you and yours to Corion’s abyss. He will gnaw your bones evermore. Corion won’t like it if he loses the souls of your indebted servants. And you must pay for your carelessness!”
What Effingchester wasn’t told was that he was just one pawn in Corion’s grand design. He wasn’t the only person in the world to make a pact with the son of darkness.
The next snippet explains this ‘curse’ that extends back to the 12th century. From Chapter One of Battle of the Band:
Within his bed chamber, the Fourth Duke of Effingchester knelt before a stone altar. A pagan cross radiating from a sun-circle encasing a snake had been carved on it. He put his red crystal medallion around his wrinkled neck and called forth The Creator’s outcast son, a god of darkness born in light.
“Corion, hear my prayer for help to defeat the Hovels Dwellers of the Wall Town. Send your legions to burn the victorious peasant army, and I will pay with my soul your allegiance Oath.”
Into the fire the Demons cast the Hovels. The Duke and the English King divided the spoils so that the Duke owned most of the land and its people.
But, as the first snippet explains, drummer Tom is ‘in it to find out’ who indentured his father. That is, Tom desires fortune in order to not only pay off the debt but to find out who indebted his family and ancestors as well. To aid in this cause, the now wealthy rocker seeks out fellow wealthy celebrities and even royalty to gather information about who might the debt holder be. In the process he becomes enamored with Princess Tina of the fictional principality called Leandro, set within Italy (as is the principality of San Marino). He thinks she might know whom the debt holder could be, being royalty herself, as his assumption is that an aristocrat is the likely owner of the indent.
The next snippet from Chapter Seven has Tom escorting Tina to her own jet right after leaving the band’s jumbo jet at a London airport coming off a grueling 1993 North American tour. Tom is planning to ask for her hand in marriage.
Tom escorted Princess Tina to her own awaiting jet. As they approached the steps, she stopped him short as he was about to ask her if she’d made up her mind about him.
“Tina, have you decided about—”
“I know what you’re going to ask, Tom. I must tell you,” she said with a choke, “I have to marry the Duke of Effingchester.”
Hand-slamming his hips, he shouted away from her ears, “Damn! Tina! You can’t do that to someone who loves you!” He then shot in front of her and faced her humbleness. “You gonna marry that bloody bore? That sexless pig? That—?”
“I don’t want to, Tom!” She wore apologetic defiance. “I don’t have a choice! I want to be with you, but I can’t!”
She ‘can’t’ marry Tom because Tom is a commoner from the lowest of the low classes; her parents insist she marry an aristocrat. In royal families, this is mostly standard operating procedure. Even Princess Di, married to the UK’s Prince Charles until divorce, is from a not-so-common family…the Spencers were low-level aristocrats after all.
But Tom does find out who indentured his family and ancestors eventually—told by an unlikely source from the spiritual realm. While singer Erik and bassist Keith are physically unconscious in a private local hospital due to heart attacks due to alcohol mixed with a dangerous designer sniffing drug high while spiritually in a white void, the ‘good’ ‘witch’ of the Hovels along with the evil Corion-inhabited Swami Negran suddenly show up in the hospital room out of nowhere. Negran is trying to win the souls of the band for the satanic Corion while the ‘witch’ is determined to prevent that from happening. Guitarist and band leader Jack, the only one in the room that can see and hear Swami and the ‘witch,’ is about to ask cult leader Swami to ‘pray’ for the souls of the two. The ‘witch’ cuts that short, then mentions the Duke, at which Tom then is able to respond. From Chapter Ten of Battle of the Band:
With the forces of good and evil waiting with baited breath to coerce their dream-like states, the souls of ‘Manning, E.’ and ‘Mullock, K.’ had decisions to make.
At the same instant in the dimension of the conscious, Swami Negran and the old woman called the Witch of the Hovels appeared, ready to help the two new inhabitants of the spirit dimension make those decisions.
In the hospital room
Jack never heard the hospital room door open or shut, yet he suddenly saw Swami and the weather-beaten figure looking at him. No one else noticed them.
Swami spoke first. “I am here to guide your spirits, as always. I will invoke Corion for you.”
The woman looked sharply into Jack’s tired brown eyes. “And send the souls of your friends to Hell, he will!” She turned to Negran. “Out of here, you son of the devil!”
Jack’s gazing eyes shifted nervously upon the entranced group. “But Swami’s been our spirit advisor for years. We’ve all worn the crystals of his cult.”
He then touched his chest. “Sorry, Rashnish, we don’t have our crystals on. Will that make a difference to Erik’s and Keith’s souls?”
“Yes!” the woman cried. “Now they have a much better chance of being saved!”
Lubin stared into space, open-mouthed and perplexed.
Negran spoke to her with arrogance “You stupid old hag! They’ve sworn allegiance to Corion, and to Corion their souls must go! It is their destiny!” He caught Jack’s attention. “That’s okay. I will protect them with my own crystal.”
“Oh, thank you, Swami.” To Corion their souls must go?
“Don’t listen to him!” the old one said at the top of her feeble lungs. “He is the agent of the Demons!”
The Demons? What Demons? “And just who are you? Do you work here? And what the hell do you want?”
“I let myself in. No one saw me come.” The old lady approached Jack silently. “Under the protection of The Tooters I have survived the wrath of The Demons for eight-hundred-plus years, watching The Demons plunder the souls of our youth to this day. I have survived to be at this prophetic moment.”
“And I am here, debauched soul, to tell you that you must invoke The Tooters to save your comrades from eternal destruction before this demonic creature you follow turns them over to his lord Lucifer. For that is who Corion really is!”
“The Tooters? They’re just—”
“A statue? No! They are the transfiguration of the angels of the Almighty. Our Creator.”
“You mean, G—”
“Yes! They came here in 1136 to fight The Demons called forth at that time by the Duke of Effingchester.”
Tom suddenly awoke from suspended animation. “What about the Duke of Effingchester?”
“You, too, are of the Hovels. Once an indentured son. Yes. Yes. The present Duke of Effingchester is the one you seek. The one who indentured your family, the one who stole your only love from you.”
Struck by lightning twice, the drummer turned around to face her with sudden hate. “Then I will” as he shot out of his seat, “kill the bloody bastard! I promised my dad—”
“No! Let the Almighty take care of the invoker of Lucifer! The Duke will follow in the steps of his wicked ancestors. He’ll burn in fire and moan with ire The Demons’ sound—unlimited.”
Which leads to the final snippet, where the fifteenth Duke of Effingchester finally suffers the consequences of his failure to help capture the souls of the prodigal band as well as allowing the debt to be paid off.
It is 2001 now and within a dungeon where, one by one, the band members are to be sacrificed to Corion for not keeping their ‘oath’ to ‘sell their souls’ to this satanic figure. First up is singer Erik, who earlier professed his acceptance of Christ as Savior (as did the others in the band) before the kidnapping for sacrifice by Hellyons, followers of Corion. As the singer is about to be impaled with a sword through the heart by Corion using minion Mark Besst, and as the rest of the band is being released by three ‘men’ (actually the Tooters angels) while another captor flees to be dealt with later, the Duke is about to learn his fate. From Chapter Thirteen of The Prodigal Band:
Corion swung his sword. But it could not penetrate the singer, still praising the Holy Trinity. “My life and the lives of mine are in your hands, my Savior Jesus Christ!”
Then, like Moses, like Elijah, like the Apostle Paul on the road to Damascus when Christ spoke to him, Erik’s face shined a light of brightness that banished the Evil from the room. The other five witnessed this event, astounded, and one of them said, “Praise God for this!”
As ‘Beast’ hastily made for the exit while the five and then Erik, guided by those three men that suddenly appeared, escaped through a different white light tunnel that suddenly appeared, Corion then took out his red crystal sight and immediately consumed Marty Effingchester, who didn’t even have a chance to shake in fear over this. “Now I will eat your bones and the bones of your ancestors, forever!” Corion shouted as a madman.
The next post will deal with symbolism.
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The Prodigal Band Trilogy © 2019 by Deborah Lagarde, Battle of the Band © 1996 by Deborah Lagarde, The Prophesied Band © 1998 by Deborah Lagarde and The Prodigal Band © 2018 by Deborah Lagarde. Permission needed to copy any materials off this page.
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